Artists will have the opportunity to change up their canvas with the “Shoes That Matter” design contest.
Registration for the first round of the contest already opened with the deadline set at Sept. 3. The first round will have teams of students choose a local beneficiary to represent, and they will design a pair of TOMS shoes relating to the cause.
Caitlin Mundschenk, a graduate assistant with the Office of New Student Programs, said the Office chose this contest because it connected with the Mizzou Reads book, “Start Something That Matters.” The book was written by TOMS founder Blake Mycoskie and focuses on starting a worthwhile, charitable organization.
“We wanted to make the Mizzou Reads Program go beyond just the actual book discussions that take place the week before classes start,” Mundschenk said
Mundschenk said the contest was designed by graduate assistants and Summer Welcome Leaders. She said the contest is aimed at freshman who would have read “Start Something That Matters,” although all students are allowed to participate.
Although many colleges have their own TOMS design contest, Mundschenk said the Office did what it could to make it specific to MU.
“A TOMS decorating contest is something other college campuses have done so we took that idea and adapted it alongside Mizzou Reads and kind of adapting Toms in a way that pulled some of the themes of the book,” Mundschenk said.
The Office will announce the finalists of the contest at the Mizzou Reads speaker presentation on Sept. 12. Ten design teams will move on to the next round.
The ten remaining teams will be asked to design a pair of Mizzou TOMS. The designs will be displayed around campus through Homecoming weekend, voted on by students and raffled off once the contest is over. The winner of the final round will be recognized at a home football game.
Feedback on the contest has been positive, said Mundschenk.
“We did a couple of pushes and made announcements and the majority of feedback has been positive,” Mundschenk said. “Students seem to be excited to be involved in a TOMS design contest.”
DSA Speakers Committee junior chair Kalina Irving said she’s excited for the competition.
“With the whole Pinterest craze, you see a lot of decorative TOMS online.” Irving said. “I like how it connects cultural events and pop culture with this contest.”
Registration forms can be found at the New Student Programs office in the basement of the Student Center or online on its website.